THE GRAND INQUISITOR By Feodor Dostoevsky

THE GRANDINQUISITOR

By FeodorDostoevsky

(Translationby H.P. Blavatsky)

[Dedicatedby the Translator to those sceptics who clamour so

loudly,both in print and private letters–“Show us the wonder-

working‘Brothers,’ let them come out publicly–and we will

believe inthem!”][Thefollowing is an extract from M. Dostoevsky’s celebrated

novel, TheBrothers Karamazof, the last publication from the pen

of thegreat Russian novelist, who died a few months ago, just as

theconcluding chapters appeared in print. Dostoevsky is

beginningto be recognized as one of the ablest and profoundest

amongRussian writers. His characters are invariably typical

portraitsdrawn from various classes of Russian society,

strikinglylife-like and realistic to the highest degree. The

followingextract is a cutting satire on modern theology

generallyand the Roman Catholic religion in particular. The idea

is thatChrist revisits earth, coming to Spain at the period of

theInquisition, and is at once arrested as a heretic by the

GrandInquisitor. One of the three brothers of the story, Ivan, a

rankmaterialist and an atheist of the new school, is supposed to

throw thisconception into the form of a poem, which he describes

toAlyosha–the youngest of the brothers, a young Christian

mysticbrought up by a “saint” in a monastery–as follows:

(–Ed.Theosophist, Nov., 1881)]

“Quiteimpossible, as you see, to start without an introduction,”

laughedIvan. “Well, then, I mean to place the event described in

the poem inthe sixteenth century, an age–as you must have been

told atschool–when it was the great fashion among poets to

make thedenizens and powers of higher worlds descend on earth

and mixfreely with mortals… In France all the notaries’

clerks, andthe monks in the cloisters as well, used to give

grandperformances, dramatic plays in which long scenes were

enacted bythe Madonna, the angels, the saints, Christ, and even

by GodHimself. In those days, everything was very artless and

primitive.An instance of it may be found in Victor Hugo’s drama,

Notre Damede Paris, where, at the Municipal Hall, a play called

Le BonJugement de la Tres-sainte et Graceuse Vierge Marie, is

enacted inhonour of Louis XI, in which the Virgin appears

personallyto pronounce her ‘good judgment.’ In Moscow, during

theprepetrean period, performances of nearly the same character,

chosenespecially from the Old Testament, were also in great

favour.Apart from such plays, the world was overflooded with

mysticalwritings, ‘verses’–the heroes of which were always

selectedfrom the ranks of angels, saints and other heavenly

citizensanswering to the devotional purposes of the age. The

recluses ofour monasteries, like the Roman Catholic monks,

passedtheir time in translating, copying, and even producing

originalcompositions upon such subjects, and that, remember,

during theTarter period!… In this connection, I am reminded of

a poemcompiled in a convent–a translation from the Greek, of

course–called,‘The Travels of the Mother of God among the

Damned,’with fitting illustrations and a boldness of conception

inferiornowise to that of Dante. The ‘Mother of God’ visits

hell, incompany with the archangel Michael as her cicerone to

guide herthrough the legions of the ‘damned.’ She sees them all,

and iswitness to their multifarious tortures. Among the many

otherexceedingly remarkably varieties of torments–every

category ofsinners having its own–there  is oneespecially

worthy ofnotice, namely a class of the ‘damned’ sentenced to

graduallysink in a burning lake of brimstone and fire. Those

whose sinscause them to sink so low that they no longer can rise

to thesurface are for ever forgotten by God, i.e., they fade out

from theomniscient memory, says the poem–an expression, by the

way, of anextraordinary profundity of thought, when closely

analysed.The Virgin is terribly shocked, and falling down upon

her kneesin tears before the throne of God, begs that all she

has seen inhell–all, all without exception, should have their

sentencesremitted to them. Her dialogue with God is colossally

interesting.She supplicates, she will not leave Him. And when

God,pointing to the pierced hands and feet of her Son, cries,

‘How can Iforgive His executioners?’ She then commands that all

the saints,martyrs, angels and archangels, should prostrate

themselveswith her before the Immutable and Changeless One and

implore Himto change His wrath into mercy and–forgive them

all. Thepoem closes upon her obtaining from God a compromise, a

kind ofyearly respite of tortures between Good Friday and

Trinity, achorus of the ‘damned’ singing loud praises to God

from their‘bottomless pit,’ thanking and telling Him:

Thou artright, O Lord, very right,

Thou hastcondemned us justly.

“Mypoem is of the same character.

“Init, it is Christ who appears on the scene. True, He says

nothing,but only appears and passes out of sight. Fifteen

centurieshave elapsed since He left the world with the distinct

promise toreturn ‘with power and great glory’; fifteen long

centuriessince His prophet cried, ‘Prepare ye the way of the

Lord!’since He Himself had foretold, while yet on earth, ‘Of

that dayand hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven

but myFather only.’ But Christendom expects Him still. …

“Itwaits for Him with the same old faith and the same emotion;

aye, with afar greater faith, for fifteen centuries have rolled

away sincethe last sign from heaven was sent to man,

And blindfaith remained alone

To lull thetrusting heart,

As heav’nwould send a sign no more.

“True,again, we have all heard of miracles being wrought ever

since the‘age of miracles’ passed away to return no more. We

had, andstill have, our saints credited with performing the most

miraculous cures;and, if we can believe their biographers, there

have beenthose among them who have been personally visited by

the Queenof Heaven. But Satan sleepeth not, and the first germs

of doubt,and ever-increasing unbelief in such wonders, already

had begunto sprout in Christendom as early as the sixteenth

century. Itwas just at that time that a new and terrible heresy

first madeits appearance in the north of Germany.*  [*Luther’s

reform]  A great star ‘shining as it were a lamp…fell upon the

fountainswaters’… and ‘they were made bitter.’ This ‘heresy’

blasphemouslydenied ‘miracles.’ But those who had remained

faithfulbelieved all the more ardently, the tears of mankind

ascended toHim as heretofore, and the Christian world was

expectingHim as confidently as ever; they loved Him and hoped in

Him,thirsted and hungered to suffer and die for Him just as many

of them haddone before…. So many centuries had weak, trusting

humanityimplored Him, crying with ardent faith and fervour: ‘How

long, OLord, holy and true, dost Thou not come!’ So many long

centurieshath it vainly appealed to Him, that at last, in His

inexhaustiblecompassion, He consenteth to answer the prayer….

He decideththat once more, if it were but for one short hour,

thepeople–His long-suffering, tortured, fatally sinful, his

loving andchild-like, trusting people–shall behold Him again.

The sceneof action is placed by me in Spain, at Seville, during

thatterrible period of the Inquisition, when, for the greater

glory ofGod, stakes were flaming all over the country.

Burningwicked heretics,

In grandauto-da-fes.

“Thisparticular visit has, of course, nothing to do with the

promisedAdvent, when, according to the programme, ‘after the

tribulationof those days,’ He will appear ‘coming in the clouds

of heaven.’For, that ‘coming of the Son of Man,’ as we are

informed,will take place as suddenly ‘as the lightning cometh

out of theeast and shineth even unto the west.’ No; this once,

He desiredto come unknown, and appear among His children, just

when thebones of the heretics, sentenced to be burnt alive, had

commencedcrackling at the flaming stakes. Owing to His limitless

mercy, Hemixes once more with mortals and in the same form in

which Hewas wont to appear fifteen centuries ago. He descends,

just at thevery moment when before king, courtiers, knights,

cardinals,and the fairest dames of court, before the whole

populationof Seville, upwards of a hundred wicked heretics are

beingroasted, in a magnificent auto-da-fe ad majorem Dei

gloriam, bythe order of the powerful Cardinal Grand Inquisitor.

“Hecomes silently and unannounced; yet all–how strange–yea,

allrecognize Him, at once! The population rushes towards Him as

ifpropelled by some irresistible force; it surrounds, throngs,

and pressesaround, it follows Him…. Silently, and with a smile

ofboundless compassion upon His lips, He crosses the dense

crowd, andmoves softly on. The Sun of Love burns in His heart,

and warmrays of Light, Wisdom and Power beam forth from His

eyes, andpour down their waves upon the swarming multitudes of

the rabbleassembled around, making their hearts vibrate with

returninglove. He extends His hands over their heads, blesses

them, andfrom mere contact with Him, aye, even with His

garments, ahealing power goes forth. An old man, blind from his

birth,cries, ‘Lord, heal me, that I may see Thee!’ and the

scalesfalling off the closed eyes, the blind man beholds Him…

The crowdweeps for joy, and kisses the ground upon which He

treads.Children strew flowers along His path and sing to Him,

‘Hosanna!’It is He, it is Himself, they say to each other, it

must be He,it can be none other but He! He pauses at the portal

of the oldcathedral, just as a wee white coffin is carried in,

with tearsand great lamentations. The lid is off, and in the

coffin liesthe body of a fair-child, seven years old, the only

child of aneminent citizen of the city. The little corpse lies

buried inflowers. ‘He will raise the child to life!’ confidently

shouts thecrowd to the weeping mother. The officiating priest

who hadcome to meet the funeral procession, looks perplexed, and

frowns. Aloud cry is suddenly heard, and the bereaved mother

prostratesherself at His feet. ‘If it be Thou, then bring back

my child tolife!’ she cries beseechingly. The procession halts,

and thelittle coffin is gently lowered at his feet. Divine

compassionbeams forth from His eyes, and as He looks at the

child, Hislips are heard to whisper once more, ‘Talitha Cumi’ –

and‘straightway the damsel arose.’ The child rises in her

coffin. Herlittle hands still hold the nosegay of white roses

which afterdeath was placed in them, and, looking round with

largeastonished eyes she smiles sweetly …. The crowd is

violentlyexcited. A terrible commotion rages among them, the

populaceshouts and loudly weeps, when suddenly, before the

cathedraldoor, appears the Cardinal Grand Inquisitor himself….

He is tall,gaunt-looking old man of nearly four-score years and

ten, with astern, withered face, and deeply sunken eyes, from

the cavityof which glitter two fiery sparks. He has laid aside

hisgorgeous cardinal’s robes in which he had appeared before the

people atthe auto da-fe of the enemies of the Romish Church, and

is now cladin his old, rough, monkish cassock. His sullen

assistantsand slaves of the ‘holy guard’ are following at a

distance.He pauses before the crowd and observes. He has seen

all. He haswitnessed the placing of the little coffin at His

feet, thecalling back to life. And now, his dark, grim face has

grown stilldarker; his bushy grey eyebrows nearly meet, and his

sunken eyeflashes with sinister light. Slowly raising his

finger, hecommands his minions to arrest Him….

“Suchis his power over the well-disciplined, submissive and now

tremblingpeople, that the thick crowds immediately give way, and

scatteringbefore the guard, amid dead silence and without one

breath ofprotest, allow them to lay their sacrilegious hands

upon thestranger and lead Him away…. That same populace, like

one man,now bows its head to the ground before the old

Inquisitor,who blesses it and slowly moves onward. The guards

conducttheir prisoner to the ancient building of the Holy

Tribunal;pushing Him into a narrow, gloomy, vaulted prison-cell,

they lockHim in and retire….

“Theday wanes, and night–a dark, hot breathless Spanish night

–creeps onand settles upon the city of Seville. The air smells

of laurelsand orange blossoms. In the Cimmerian darkness of the

oldTribunal Hall the iron door of the cell is suddenly thrown

open, andthe Grand Inquisitor, holding a dark lantern, slowly

stalks intothe dungeon. He is alone, and, as the heavy door

closesbehind him, he pauses at the threshold, and, for a minute

or two,silently and gloomily scrutinizes the Face before him. At

lastapproaching with measured steps, he sets his lantern down

upon thetable and addresses Him in these words:

“‘It is Thou! … Thou!’ … Receiving no reply, herapidly

continues:‘Nay, answer not; be silent! … And what couldst Thou

say? … Iknow but too well Thy answer…. Besides, Thou hast no

right toadd one syllable to that which was already uttered by

Theebefore…. Why shouldst Thou now return, to impede us in our

work? ForThou hast come but for that only, and Thou knowest it

well. Butart Thou as well aware of what awaits Thee in the

morning? Ido not know, nor do I care to know who thou mayest be:

be it Thouor only thine image, to-morrow I will condemn and burn

Thee on thestake, as the most wicked of all the heretics; and

that samepeople, who to-day were kissing Thy feet, to-morrow at

one bend ofmy finger, will rush to add fuel to Thy funeral

pile… Wert Thou aware of this?’ he adds, speaking as if in

solemnthought, and never for one instant taking his piercing

glance offthe meek Face before him.”….

“I canhardly realize the situation described–what is all

this,Ivan?” suddenly interrupted Alyosha, who had remained

silentlylistening to his brother. “Is this an extravagant fancy,

or somemistake of the old man, an impossible quid pro quo?”

“Letit be the latter, if you like,” laughed Ivan, “since modern

realism hasso perverted your taste that you feel unable to

realizeanything from the world of fancy…. Let it be a quid pro

quo, if youso choose it. Again, the Inquisitor is ninety years

old, and hemight have easily gone mad with his one idee fixe of

power; or,it might have as well been a delirious vision, called

forth bydying fancy, overheated by the auto-da-fe of the hundred

heretics inthat forenoon…. But what matters for the poem,

whether itwas a quid pro quo or an uncontrollable fancy? The

questionis, that the old man has to open his heart; that he must

give outhis thought at last; and that the hour has come when he

does speakit out, and says loudly that which for ninety years he

has keptsecret within his own breast.”

“Andhis prisoner, does He never reply? Does He keep silent,

looking athim, without saying a word?”

“Ofcourse; and it could not well be otherwise,” again retorted

Ivan.“The Grand Inquisitor begins from his very first words by

telling Himthat He has no right to add one syllable to that which

He had saidbefore. To make the situation clear at once, the above

preliminarymonologue is intended to convey to the reader the very

fundamentalidea which underlies Roman Catholicism–as well as I

can conveyit, his words mean, in short: ‘Everything was given

over byThee to the Pope, and everything now rests with him alone;

Thou hastno business to return and thus hinder us in our work.’

In thissense the Jesuits not only talk but write likewise.

“‘Hastthou the right to divulge to us a single one of the

mysteriesof that world whence Thou comest?’ enquires of Him my

oldInquisitor, and forthwith answers for Him. ‘Nay, Thou has no

such right.For, that would be adding to that which was already

said byThee before; hence depriving people of that freedom for

which Thouhast so stoutly stood up while yet on earth….

Anythingnew that Thou would now proclaim would have to be

regarded asan attempt to interfere with that freedom of choice,

as it wouldcome as a new and a miraculous revelation superseding

the oldrevelation of fifteen hundred years ago, when Thou didst

sorepeatedly tell the people: “The truth shall make you free.”

Beholdthen, Thy “free” people now!’ adds the old man with sombre

irony.‘Yea!… it has cost us dearly.’ he continues, sternly

looking athis victim. ‘But we have at last accomplished our

task,and–in Thy name…. For fifteen long centuries we had to

toil andsuffer owing to that “freedom”: but now we have

prevailedand our work is done, and well and strongly it is done.

….Believestnot Thou it is so very strong? … And why should

Thou lookat me so meekly as if I were not worthy even of Thy

indignation?…Know then, that now, and only now, Thy people

feel fullysure and satisfied of their freedom; and that only

since theyhave themselves and of their own free will delivered

thatfreedom unto our hands by placing it submissively at our

feet. Butthen, that is what we have done. Is it that which Thou

has strivenfor? Is this the kind of “freedom” Thou has promised

them?'”

“Nowagain, I do not understand,” interrupted Alyosha. “Does the

old manmock and laugh?”

“Notin the least. He seriously regards it as a great service

done byhimself, his brother monks and Jesuits, to humanity, to

haveconquered and subjected unto their authority that freedom,

and boaststhat it was done but for the good of the world. ‘For

only now,’he says (speaking of the Inquisition) ‘has it become

possible tous, for the first time, to give a serious thought to

humanhappiness. Man is born a rebel, and can rebels be ever

happy?…Thou has been fairly warned of it, but evidently to no

use, sinceThou hast rejected the only means which could make

mankindhappy; fortunately at Thy departure Thou hast delivered

the task tous…. Thou has promised, ratifying the pledge by Thy

own words,in words giving us the right to bind and unbind… and

surely,Thou couldst not think of depriving us of it now!'”

“Butwhat can he mean by the words, ‘Thou has been fairly

warned’?”asked Alexis.

“Thesewords give the key to what the old man has to say for his

justification… But listen–

“‘Theterrible and wise spirit, the spirit of self annihilation

andnon-being,’ goes on the Inquisitor, ‘the great spirit of

negationconversed with Thee in the wilderness, and we are told

that he “tempted” Thee… Was it so? And if it were so, then it is

impossibleto utter anything more truthful than what is contained

in histhree offers, which Thou didst reject, and which are

usuallycalled “temptations.” Yea; if ever there was on earth a

genuinestriking wonder produced, it was on that day of Thy three

temptations,and it is precisely in these three short sentences

that themarvelous miracle is contained. If it were possible that

they shouldvanish and disappear for ever, without leaving any

trace, fromthe record and from the memory of man, and that it

shouldbecome necessary again to devise, invent, and make them

reappear inThy history once more, thinkest Thou that all the

world’ssages, all the legislators, initiates, philosophers and

thinkers,if called upon to frame three questions which should,

like these,besides answering the magnitude of the event, express

in threeshort sentences the whole future history of this our

world andof mankind–dost Thou believe, I ask Thee, that all

theircombined efforts could ever create anything equal in power

and depthof thought to the three propositions offered Thee by the

powerfuland all-wise spirit in the wilderness? Judging of them by

theirmarvelous aptness alone, one can at once perceive that they

emanatednot from a finite, terrestrial intellect, but indeed,

from theEternal and the Absolute. In these three offers we find,

blendedinto one and foretold to us, the complete subsequent

history ofman; we are shown three images, so to say, uniting in

them allthe future axiomatic, insoluble problems and

contradictionsof human nature, the world over. In those days, the

wondrouswisdom contained in them was not made so apparent as it

is now, forfuturity remained still veiled; but now, when fifteen

centurieshave elapsed, we see that everything in these three

questionsis so marvelously foreseen and foretold, that to add to,

or to takeaway from, the prophecy one jot, would be absolutely

impossible!

“‘Decidethen thyself.’ sternly proceeded the Inquisitor, ‘which

of ye twainwas right: Thou who didst reject, or he who offered?

Rememberthe subtle meaning of question the first, which runs

thus:Wouldst Thou go into the world empty-handed? Would Thou

venturethither with Thy vague and undefined promise of freedom,

which men,dull and unruly as they are by nature, are unable so

much as to understand,which they avoid and fear?–for never was

thereanything more unbearable to the human race than personal

freedom!Dost Thou see these stones in the desolate and glaring

wilderness?Command that these stones be made bread–and mankind

will run afterThee, obedient and grateful like a herd of cattle.

But eventhen it will be ever diffident and trembling, lest Thou

should takeaway Thy hand, and they lose thereby their bread!

Thou didstrefuse to accept the offer for fear of depriving men

of their freechoice; for where is there freedom of choice where

men arebribed with bread? Man shall not live by bread alone–

was Thineanswer. Thou knewest not, it seems, that it was

preciselyin the name of that earthly bread that the terrestrial

spiritwould one day rise against, struggle with, and finally

conquerThee, followed by the hungry multitudes shouting: “Who is

like untothat Beast, who maketh fire come down from heaven upon

theearth!” Knowest Thou not that, but a few centuries hence, and

the whole ofmankind will have proclaimed in its wisdom and

through itsmouthpiece, Science, that there is no more crime,

hence nomore sin on earth, but only hungry people? “Feed us

first andthen command us to be virtuous!” will be the words

writtenupon the banner lifted against Thee–a banner which

shalldestroy Thy Church to its very foundations, and in the

place ofThy Temple shall raise once more the terrible Tower of

Babel; andthough its building be left unfinished, as was that of

the firstone, yet the fact will remain recorded that Thou

couldst,but wouldst not, prevent the attempt to build that new

tower byaccepting the offer, and thus saving mankind a

millenniumof useless suffering on earth. And it is to us that

the peoplewill return again. They will search for us catacombs,

as we shallonce more be persecuted and martyred–and they will

begincrying unto us: “Feed us, for they who promised us the fire

from heavenhave deceived us!” It is then that we will finish

buildingtheir tower for them. For they alone who feed them shall

finish it,and we shall feed them in Thy name, and lying to them

that it isin that name. Oh, never, never, will they learn to

feedthemselves without our help! No science will ever give them

bread solong as they remain free, so long as they refuse to lay

thatfreedom at our feet, and say: “Enslave, but feed us!” That

day mustcome when men will understand that freedom and daily

breadenough to satisfy all are unthinkable and can never be had

together,as men will never be able to fairly divide the two

amongthemselves. And they will also learn that they can never be

free, forthey are weak, vicious, miserable nonentities born

wicked andrebellious. Thou has promised to them the bread of

life, thebread of  heaven; but I ask Thee again,can that bread

ever equalin the sight of the weak and the vicious, the ever

ungratefulhuman race, their daily bread on earth? And even

supposingthat thousands and tens of thousands follow Thee in the

name of,and for the sake of, Thy heavenly bread, what will

become ofthe millions and hundreds of millions of human beings

to weak toscorn the earthly for the sake of Thy heavenly bread?

Or is itbut those tens of thousands chosen among the great and

the mighty,that are so dear to Thee, while the remaining

millions,innumerable as the grains of sand in the seas, the weak

and theloving, have to be used as material for the former? No,

no! In oursight and for our purpose the weak and the lowly are

the moredear to us. True, they are vicious and rebellious, but

we willforce them into obedience, and it is they who will admire

us themost. They will regard us as gods, and feel grateful to

those whohave consented to lead the masses and bear their burden

of freedomby ruling over them–so terrible will that freedom at

last appearto men! Then we will tell them that it is in

obedienceto Thy will and in Thy name that we rule over them. We

willdeceive them once more and lie to them once again–for

never,never more will we allow Thee to come among us. In this

deceptionwe will find our suffering, for we must needs lie

eternally,and never cease to lie!

“Suchis the secret meaning of “temptation” the first, and that

is whatThou didst reject in the wilderness for the sake of that

freedomwhich Thou didst prize above all. Meanwhile Thy tempter’s

offercontained another great world-mystery. By accepting the

“bread,”Thou wouldst have satisfied and answered a universal

craving, aceaseless longing alive in the heart of every

individualhuman being, lurking in the breast of collective

mankind,that most perplexing problem–“whom or what shall we

worship?”There exists no greater or more painful anxiety for a

man who hasfreed himself from all religious bias, than how he

shallsoonest find a new object or idea to worship. But man seeks

to bowbefore that only which is recognized by the greater

majority,if not by all his fellow-men, as having a right to be

worshipped;whose rights are so unquestionable that men agree

unanimouslyto bow down to it. For the chief concern of these

miserablecreatures is not to find and worship the idol of their

own choice,but to discover that which all others will believe

in, andconsent to bow down to in a mass. It is that instinctive

need ofhaving a worship in common that is the chief suffering of

every man,the chief concern of mankind from the beginning of

times. Itis for that universality of religious worship that

peopledestroyed each other by sword. Creating gods unto

themselves,they forwith began appealing to each other: “Abandon

yourdeities, come and bow down to ours, or death to ye and your

idols!”And so will they do till the end of this world; they will

do so eventhen, when all the gods themselves have disappeared,

for thenmen will prostrate themselves before and worship some

idea. Thoudidst know, Thou couldst not be ignorant of, that

mysteriousfundamental principle in human nature, and still thou

hastrejected the only absolute banner offered Thee, to which all

the nationswould remain true, and before which all would have

bowed–thebanner of earthly bread, rejected in the name of

freedom andof “bread in the kingdom of God”! Behold, then, what

Thou hastdone furthermore for that “freedom’s” sake! I repeat to

Thee, manhas no greater anxiety in life than to find some one to

whom he canmake over that gift of freedom with which the

unfortunatecreature is born. But he alone will prove capable of

silencingand quieting their consciences, that shall succeed in

possessinghimself of the freedom of men. With “daily bread” an

irresistiblepower was offered Thee: show a man “bread” and he

will followThee, for what can he resist less than the attraction

of bread?But if, at the same time, another succeed in possessing

himself ofhis conscience–oh! then even Thy bread will be

forgotten,and man will follow him who seduced his conscience. So

far Thouwert right. For the mystery of human being does not

solely restin the desire to live, but in the problem–for what

should onelive at all? Without a clear perception of his reasons

for living,man will never consent to live, and will rather

destroyhimself than tarry on earth, though he be surrounded with

bread. Thisis the truth. But what has happened? Instead of

gettinghold of man’s freedom, Thou has enlarged it still more!

Hast Thouagain forgotten that to man rest and even death are

preferableto a free choice between the knowledge of Good and

Evil?Nothing seems more seductive in his eyes than freedom of

conscience,and nothing proves more painful. And behold! instead

of laying afirm foundation whereon to rest once for all man’s

conscience,Thou hast chosen to stir up in him all that is

abnormal,mysterious, and indefinite, all that is beyond human

strength,and has acted as if Thou never hadst any love for him,

and yet Thouwert He who came to “lay down His life for His

friends!”Thou hast burdened man’s soul with anxieties hitherto

unknown tohim. Thirsting for human love freely given, seeking to

enable man,seduced and charmed by Thee, to follow Thy path of

his ownfree-will, instead of the old and wise law which held him

insubjection, Thou hast given him the right henceforth to choose

and freelydecide what is good and bad for him, guided but by

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